Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – August 25, 2019

Photo of three Sheaffers added to the rotationAs mentioned in last week’s trail log, I wanted to ink up some Sheaffers and start using them. I was a bit disappointed as all my Balance Oversize pens needed new sacs. I knew I had several Sheaffers needing sacs, I didn’t realize it was every Oversize that I own. So I had to pick from my other Sheaffers.

I picked two vintage Triumphs and a more modern Legacy 1 with a stub nib. The Legacy I is a touchdown filler, the more recent type that’s removable, so a cartridge can be used. It was filled with P.W. Akkerman Dutch Masters Steenrood van Vermeer ink.

Both Triumphs and use Sheaffer’s vacuum-fil plunger filling system. I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed the conical “Triumph” nib, and my previous disappointment vanished. The Triumph Lifetime has an extra-fine nib and was filled with Montblanc Bordeaux ink. The Triumph Sentinal has a fine nib and was filled with R & K Blau-Schwarz LE (Blue-Black) ink.

Even though I recently refilled my Fisher of Pens, Hermes I flushed it out. Not due to any problem, but it’s been very hot recently and I didn’t want to risk leaving the pen in a hot car, which meant it would sit home unused (it’s too long for either a shirt-pocket carry and for the case I’m currently using). My Montblanc Ultra-Black was written dry and returned to the case. It was replaced in spirit (meaning I enjoy the nib but it’s completely unsuitable for everyday use by me) by the Legacy I.

Links

Esterbrook Pen Nooks: bringing some pizzazz to pen storage | UK fountain pens // These are a different style than I typically see, I find them intriguing. I’m not in the market for any pen cases, but if I was I think I’d pass on these unless I wanted them for desk-bound storage.

canetas e coisas: MOONMAN // I don’t pay too much attention to pen reviews or announcements these days, mainly in order to avoid temptation. Bit Moonman is a name I’ve been seeing more and more. So I searched Amazon and fount their most expensive pen was about $35. No wonder they’re so popular (apparently). Nice pen.

Which Pen? – Goodwriterspens’s Blog // I’m trying to thin my accumulation, but one pen? But she has a point. I have to agree that the nib is a big factor for me too.

It’s A Spanner! It’s A Wrench! It’s Pelikan’s Vintage Nib Removal Tool! « The Pelikan’s Perch // More good Pelikan information from Joshua.

Off-Topic – Hasbro Now Owns Death Row Records – Stereogum For some reason this struck me as both wrong and interesting.

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Vintage Parkers For Sale

As much as I like the celluloid used on these vintage Vacumatics, I haven’t been using the pens, so I’ll be keeping my favorite and passing the rest along to more appreciative homes.

There’s no boxes or paperwork included.

Shipping in the U.S. is $7.90 (small flat rate box) for as many pens as will fit in the box unless otherwise noted. Payment is via PayPal Goods & Services and ships only to addresses in the PayPal payment. Sorry, no international shipping for these pens. U.S. based forwarding services are OK as long as the U.S. address is in your PayPal payment.

Prices are firm, although multiple pen purchases won’t increase shipping costs as long as they fit in the box. Plus I’ll take 5% off the pen prices if you buy two or more at one time.

Writing samples for Parkers up for sale

 

Parker 1939 Blue Diamond Vacumatic Maxima, Golden Pearl w/Gold Trim (14kt gold Fine nib)Celluloid varies, very worn in spots, vibrant in others. Gold trim. This was restored in 2013 and has seen little use since then. $90 plus shipping. (SOLD)

Parker 1944 Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl w/Gold Trim (14kt gold XXF nib) – Celluloid is in excellent condition with good transparency and no ambering. This was restored in 2013 and has seen little use since then. $90 plus shipping.

Parker 1945 Striped Duofold Senior, Red/Gray Striped w/Gold Trim (14kt gold V-Design nib)Good transparency although there is some ambling visible when held to the light. This was restored in 2013 and has seen little use since then. $150 plus shipping. (SOLD)

The following pen leaks and is sold “as-is”:

Parker 1928/1929 Duofold Senior, Duofold Orange w/Gold Trim. Dual Bands w/Flat Top (14kt gold fine nib)PEN LEAKS – sold as-is. The pen does take in ink and will write, but the ink leaks from around the nib making it messy and unusable. $90 plus shipping. (SOLD)

Saying Goodbye: Deep Cuts

Five Sheaffer fountain pens being soldIt’s time to get back to work thinning my accumulation. Once I got rolling earlier this year, it was pretty easy to let go of the pens. While I did pull one back after listing it (the Pelikan M101N Lizard) I have no regrets or sellers remorse for any of the other pens that left my accumulation. It’s time to go deeper and get rid of pens that were part of two “protected” groups: Sheaffer fountain pens and vintage fountain pens.

I protected the vintage pens for two reasons. The biggest reason was that I expect them to be harder to price and sell than my modern pens. I told myself that the main reason was that I like the idea of the fountain pens as a bit of history, even if I don’t use them. While that’s true, I only have a tiny part of history, and I’d rather have pens I will use. The good news (for me at least) is that I have very few vintage fountain pens with features that would keep me from using them, such as being too thin. The bad news, again for me, is that I did, and still do, have some gorgeous Sheaffers that are just too thin for me to use comfortably for anything other than a quick note. Most of these are already sold.

The intersection of those two groups, vintage Sheaffers are still mostly protected although a couple being sold qualify as vintage. My birthday is how I define vintage. I’m not vintage, therefore a pen born on the same day (or later) is not vintage, but a pen made the day before I was born is vintage. Sheaffer PFM I fountain pens straddle the vintage/not-vintage line, although from what I’ve in some research is that most were made before I was.

I picked five Sheaffer fountain pens to rip off the band-aid and return some Sheaffers to the wild. The picks are:

  • A PFM I in blue was a natural choice. I have two PFM I fountain pens with the same nib and writing characteristics. I’m keeping the green one.
  • Both my Sheaffer Crests with Laque finishes (one red, one green). These are gorgeous pens despite having gold trim. They’re too thin for me to use for any length of time. It’s tough getting old.
  • A Sheaffer Targa with a green Lague finish. Like the Crests it’s gorgeous, has a lovely nib, and is too thin for me to use comfortably.
  • The fifth pick is a Sheaffer Snorkel. Like the Crests and the Targa it’s too thin for my use, and even lighter than the others which makes it even worse for me.

The pens with the Laque finishes are the real test for me. The pens are gorgeous, as beautiful as my Balance II’s and much more durable. Plus they have lovely nibs.

For the non-Sheaffer vintage pens, it was much easier to choose. Rather than picking ones to sell, I picked the ones to keep. More specifically, I picked three to keep. I’ll keep two Esterbrooks. The Esterbrook $1 Band-less pen was my first Esterbrook, while a dark blue Esterbrook J was my first Esterbrook restoration. Both are too thin and light for extended use by me but have a certain sentimental value. While I’ll be using my Esterbrook nibs in modern pens I do want to keep a couple of official vintage Esterbrooks around for testing, so it might as well be these.

The third vintage keeper will a Parker Blue Diamond Maxima with Silver Pearl celluloid and nickel trim. I love the celluloid on these pens and prefer the aesthetic of this model over the others that I have.

I’m hoping to spend some time listing more pens to sell later this week. I’m in the frame of mind to take a hard look to determine which pens I really like and will enjoy using. It’s time to start making some deep cuts, and the five Sheaffers were the beginning.

Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – August 18, 2019

A trio of vintage vacumaticsOne of these links has an expiration date, and I had a few minutes, so unexpected Trail Logs on consecutive Sundays.

In another surprise (at least to me) I inked up three vintage pens, all Parker Vacumatics, and I’ve been using them the last few days. Once I verify how well they are working I’ll probably put them up for sale since they haven’t been used in years. I did pick another one to keep.

I’ll also mention here, to give readers advanced notice, that my broken Sheaffer Balance Oversize Lifetime (Marine Green) is for sale. The pen is broken as shown here. The celluloid is still gorgeous, but the nib isn’t suited for me so I’m ambivalent about finding a replacement cap or paying to get it fixed (if even possible) despite the beautiful celluloid. I won’t be able to grab new photos until late in the week, but it hasn’t changed since that post. It’s a custom stub nib, and I’m looking for $75 OBO plus $7.90 US shipping. It’s broken, so as-is.

I also added re-sacing two other Balance Oversize pens to my todo list. One is ready for the new sac, the other still needs to be opened up and I’m hoping a new sac will fix it. With my recent moving i’ve been unable to find some of my repair supplies, so I ordered the essentials (shellac, talc, sacs) from Anderson Pens and will hopefully get to it this week. Naturally, the supplies will re-appear when I’m looking for something else.

Links

Unbranded MHR Lever Filler – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

Are Fountain Pens Really Better? – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

My Personal Hall of Fame: Favorite Stationery Products in Every Category — The Gentleman Stationer

Traveler’s Notebook Stamp Caravan and TN Meet-Up – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

Fountain Pens & Inks – Universe (Airtable) // Via Pen Addict Member Newsletter (Refill) // It’s coincidental that this showed up in the newsletter the day after I played around with Airtable to create a inventory of my fountain pens. There was also a link to an ink inventory/community site, but you’ll need the membership to see that one.

For Sale – Some Sheaffers

Update: These pens have all been sold.

Sheaffers for Sale

It’s time to make some painful cuts to my accumulation. It’s time to pass some beautiful Sheaffers along to people who will use them. These are Sheaffers I don’t use despite them being terrific pens. The Crests, Snorkel and Targa are too thin for me to use comfortably for extended periods, while the PFM I is a duplicate and I’m keeping the better color.

Boxes and paperwork are not included. Converters are included for pens that use a converter, see the listing for the type of converter that is included. Converters are recent purchases and probably don’t match the style of the original converter.

Shipping in the U.S. is $7.90 (small flat rate box) for as many pens as will fit in the box unless otherwise noted. Payment is via PayPal Goods & Services and ships only to addresses in the PayPal payment. Sorry, no international shipping for these pens. U.S. based forwarding services are OK as long as the U.S. address is in your PayPal payment.

Prices are firm, although multiple pen purchases won’t increase shipping costs as long as they fit in the box. Plus I’ll take 5% off the pen prices if you purchase more than one pen at the same time.

The first firm “I want it” gets the pen and I’ll send a PayPal invoice. Contact me using the contact form on this page, or email me at ray[@]fpquest.com (remove the brackets).

Click any image for a larger size.

Sheaffer Crest (1996-1998) Nova Green Laque (aka Emerald Green) Model 583. 18 ct. gold extra-fine nib. Includes a piston style converter. Excellent condition. More info on this model is here. (Withdrawn)

Sheaffer Crest (1996-1998) Nova Red Laque (aka Flame Red) Model 581. 18 ct. gold extra fine nib. Includes a vacuum type converter. More info on this model here. I reviewed this pen here. Excellent condition. $75 + shipping (Sold)

Sheaffer Targa (1997-1999) Green Marble Model Laque Model 1186. 14 ct. gold nib. Includes a vacuum type converter. More info on this model here. Excellent condition. $70 + shipping. (On Hold)

Sheaffer Snorkel Saratoga Burgundy (Non-White Dot Model) (1955-1959) 14 ct gold extra fine two-tone open nib (not conical nib). More info on this model here, scroll down to the section on non-white dot models. I wrote about this pen here. Very good condition, plastic body shows minor signs of wear. $40 + shipping. (Sold)

Sheaffer PFM I Blue, Fine PdAg nib (Palladium Silver) I reviewed this pen here. Excellent condition $199 + shipping (SOLD)

The Snorkel and PFM I are both snorkel fillers. Information about the filling system and instructions for filing a snorkel can be found here.